Pumpkin Almond Flour Cookies for Halloween and Thanksgiving are a delightful treat to to celebrate the fall season and holidays. You can keep them natural or make them orange -- and either way, they're super delicious and fun.
Though Halloween Pumpkin Cookies might be more popular, these adorable Pumpkin Almond Flour Cookies are excellent Thanksgiving cookies, too!
Easy and fun to make, they're every bit as delicious as they are cute!
These are a cake-like cookie with a soft and chewy texture. The outside bottom is ever so slightly crisp, and the almond on top adds a nice contrasting crunch.
They're a bit more rustic looking without orange coloring. I use just a touch of annatto seed oil (see ingredients below), which gives the cookies a natural orange hue. You can also use orange food coloring if you want to.
What You'll Need
(I often suggest brands I love and use — these are only suggestions and this is not a sponsored post.)
- unsalted butter - I always bake with unsalted butter so I can control exactly how much salt is in the recipe.
- powdered (Confectioners) sugar
- 100% pumpkin purée - I've tested this recipe with various brands of 100% pumpkin purée. Libby's is the best one to achieve the right consistency for this cookie batter. (It's a bit thicker than others, and this is a drier dough, so it works the best.)
- pure vanilla extract - I like this one.
- almond flour - Be sure to use almond flour and not almond meal for this recipe.
- ground cinnamon
- ground allspice
- all-purpose flour - This recipe has also been tested with Cup4Cup Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour and it works very well.
- corn starch - This to help absorb some of the moisture. Only a very small amount is used, and only if the batter is too sticky. (See Recipe Tips and Substitutions below.)
- salt - I always bake with Kosher salt. (It’s coarse and salts foods in a subtle way that enhances their flavor without making them taste salty.)
- annatto seed oil or orange food coloring for extra color (optional) -- Annatto seed oil is a natural food coloring. It's not as strong, but will give the cookies an orange hue. Here's how to make it.
- honey roasted almond slices or regular almond slices - The honey roasted slices are a bit sweet which is delicious with the cookie.
How to Make Pumpkin Almond Flour Cookies: Step-by-Step
(More detailed instructions are in the recipe card below.)
- Add the butter and powdered sugar to a large mixing bow. Mix for about 30 seconds or so, until it's a bit lighter and very smooth.
- Add in the pumpkin, vanilla, salt, and spices. Mix until smooth. At this point, you can add a a drop or so of annatto seed oil or orange food coloring if desired.
- Fold in the almond flour and all-purpose flour and mix only until it's evenly incorporated. If it seems too sticky to easily roll between your palms, add the corn starch.
- Shape dough into approximately 1½ tablespoon-sized balls. Gently roll each one between the palms of your hands until smooth. Place them on a parchment-lined sheet pan as you go, fairly close together.
- Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until they’re firm, at least 3 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Remove the the sheet pan from the refrigerator and use the back of a paring knife to make several vertical lines around each ball of dough, all coming together at the top center.
- Place them on another parchment-lined sheet pan, with at least an inch between each one. (Half will remain on the original sheet pan, so space those out also.)
- Bake until bottoms are slightly golden and the cookies feel dry to the touch, 15 minutes.
- As soon as they come out of the oven, insert a couple sliced almonds in the top center of each "pumpkin," where the lines meet, to form the "stem." (Try to find slices with the almond skin for the outsides of the stems.)
Recipe Tips and Substitutions
- The dough for these pumpkin almond flour cookies should be on the dry side. If it's not, it's difficult to shape it into balls. If you're having trouble because it's too sticky, add about 1½ tablespoons of corn starch.
- When you shape the dough, be sure they are totally round, like small golf balls. Do this between the palms of your hands to create a smooth, even surface.
Do not skip the step of refrigerating the shaped cookie dough. I suggest a minimum of three hours, but the longer the better. This will be helpful when you make faint lines in them, to make them look like pumpkins.
You'll use the dull side of a small knife to make several vertical lines around each ball of dough. Be sure to be very gentle when doing this -- only a small amount of pressure is necessary.
- It's important to insert the pumpkin "stems" (the sliced almond) while the cookies are still quite warm. I love the end slices with the skin still intact because they more closely resemble an actual stem -- however, any almond slice will do.
- Do not attempt to bake them with the almond slices. They will burn!
- If you can't get your hands on the Honey Roasted Almonds Slices, the regular slices will still be delicious.
- If you're storing them for a couple of days (see below), do not wrap them until they're completely cooled to room temperature.
- For a gluten-free version, use Cup4Cup Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour. It works well, but the dough will be a bit less dry, so you'll need to add the cornstarch.
How to Store Them
While the below methods will be fine, they're best served as close to the time they're baked as possible. They'll loose any crispness from their bottoms once they're stored for a few hours. They'll still be super tasty this way, only softer.
- Room temperature. At room temperature, they can be stored in a single layer in an airtight container for up to three days. (If the almonds aren't too fragile, you can attempt a double layer with a piece of wax paper or parchment in between.) For large amounts, you can store them in a single layer on a sheet pan, wrapped in foil.
- Freezer. Sealed tightly, pumpkin almond cookies can be stored for about a month in the freezer. (Of course they’ll last longer than that frozen, but will taste the best for up to a month.)
And below what they look like with a couple of drops of orange food coloring in the batter.
Whether you want Halloween cookies, Thanksgiving cookies, or just a delicious fall treat, I hope you'll try these Pumpkin Almond Flour Cookies . . . . and love them!
More fall pumpkin desserts:
- Healthy Gluten-Free Chocolate Chip Pumpkin Cookies
- Pumpkin Coffee Cake with Streusel and Caramel
- Pumpkin Spice Glazed Air Fryer Donut Holes
- Pecan Crusted Caramel Pumpkin Pie
Pumpkin Almond Flour Cookies Reicpe
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1½ cups powdered (Confectioners) sugar
- 1 cup pumpkin purée
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon allspice
- a drop of annatto seed oil or orange food coloring (if desired)
- 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup almond flour
- 1½ tablespoon corn starch* (if necessary)
- about ⅓ cup Honey Roasted Almond Slices or other almond slices
- Prepare baking sheets. Line two sheet pans with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Make the batter. In a large mixing bowl, combine the butter with the powdered sugar. Mix for about 30 seconds or so, until it's a bit lighter and very smooth. Add in the pumpkin, vanilla, salt, cinnamon and allspice. Mix until smooth. At this point, you can add a a drop or so of annatto seed oil or orange food coloring if desired. Fold in the almond flour and all-purpose flour and mix only until it's evenly incorporated. If you think the batter is to sticky to easily roll between your palms, add the corn starch.
- Shape the dough. Shape dough into approximately 1½ tablespoon-sized balls. Gently roll each one between the palms of your hands until it's smooth. Place them on one of the prepared baking sheets as you go, fairly close together. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until they're firm, at least 3 hours.
- Set the oven. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- "Decorate" the cookies. Remove the the sheet pan from the refrigerator and use the back of a paring knife to make several (about 7) vertical lines around each ball of dough, all coming together at the top center. Add them to the other prepared sheet pan as you go, being sure there's at least an inch between each one. (Half will remain on the original sheet pan, so space those out also.)
- Bake. Bake in the preheated 350°F oven until bottoms are slightly golden and the cookies are dry to the touch, about 15 minutes.
- Add almond slices and cool. Just after you remove the cookies from the oven, and they're still quite warm, insert a few of the sliced almonds to the top of each "pumpkin," where the lines meet, to form the "stem." Try to find slices with the almond skin for the outsides of the stems.
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Oh my gosh, I love these! This is the perfect recipe to make with the kids. Speaking of which, our decorations are "cute" too... Last year we added a few tombstones but I just can't get myself to go much gorier than that. : )
Thank you, Jeanne! I might be able to handle a tombstone or two. 😉
I prefer a "cute" Halloween as well! And your cookies are irresistible!
Thanks so much, Deb. Here's to a very "cute" Halloween! 😉
These are ridiculously adorable!
Thank you, Aimée! XO
I'm bookin' these. Gonna make some tonight!
SO stinkin' cute! I can't even stand it!
Julia | JuliasAlbum.com
So creative! I can't believe those are cookies and not little pumpkins! Will be pinning these!
thanks for the pumpkin love, Julia! 🙂
I love almond cookies, and yours looks so cute! What a clever idea to make them look like pumpkins
These look divine! Such an artist you are, Valentina, in all ways! Wow, you could sell these at the Farmers Market in a heartbeat! - Kaye
Those are so adorable. Such a good, simple idea!
Thanks so much, Kelly! Happy fall!
Colette @ JFF!
Valentina, I sent your recipe to a friend and she made these w her kids. They had a blast. She said they were delicious. I can't wait to try them myself.
Colette, thanks so much for passing this recipe on to your friend! I'm so happy they were a hit! 🙂
meatballs & milkshakes
how cute are those!?
How well do these hold up? I am thinking of making them three days in advance of an event. Will they stay moist?
I think they should be fine -- once they've cooled make sure they're in a tightly sealed container in a cool, dark place. You can also freeze them -- they will loose a bit of moisture, but will still be good. (If you do freeze them, they should also be in a very tightly sealed container -- and take them out to defrost about 2 hours before serving.) 🙂 Enjoy!
Thank you!! 😉
Absolutely beautiful ! My son will love these for sure 🙂 Thank you dear !
Thank you, Davorka! Hope they go over well. 🙂 ~Valentina
These are so cute!! I wish my daughter was still little but I guess I will still make it just for fun!
I used to love making cookies with my kids when they were little. Now teenagers, they're not quite as into it. Go figure. 😉 Thanks for visiting. 🙂 ~Valentina
They look so adorable and fun to make with kids or girlfriends :-))
Totally. Thanks, Angie! 🙂 ~Valentina
John / Kitchen Riffs
These really are cute. And look like they're scary good. So you cover all bases with these. 🙂
Love that, John! Thanks. 🙂 ~Valentina
David @ Spiced
Woah, these cookies are amazing, Valentina! I'm sitting here thinking through occasions that I have coming up to make these...then I realized I don't need an excuse. I just need to make these for us! When it comes to Halloween, I'm not really on board the gory train. I do however LOVE the spooky and creepy train. 🙂
Thank you, David! I'm good with spooky and creepy (well, maybe just spooky). 😉 I bet Robbie is excited for Halloween. It's so much fun with little kids! Enjoy. 🙂 ~Valentina
Dawn - Girl Heart Food
I love cute over gory too so these are right up my alley! And what an adorable presentation! We have our Thanksgiving this coming weekend here in Canada so great timing with these cookies 🙂 Pinned! Have a lovely weekend, my friend!
Yay, here's to "cute!" And Happy Thanksgiving to you! xo 🙂 ~Valentina
wow. These are way too tedious for me to make. I probably could have done it when my kids were little! So cute. You're very talented.
Thanks, Mimi! When my kids were little I'd stay up all night detailing little cupcakes of their favorite cartoon characters -- these are much less work than that. 🙂 ~Valentina
Linger, Kristy Murray
Oh! my! Goodness!! These little pumpkin cookies are adorable and the perfect treat for Halloween.
Thanks, Kristy! Enjoy and happy fall. 🙂 ~Valentina
These are adorable!
Thanks, Kathy! Happy fall. 🙂 ~Valentina
Jeff the Chef @ Make It Like a Man!
I just went to a fall-themed potluck yesterday. I wish I had seen this beforehand! These cookies are so attractive, but more than that, they sound delicious.
Thanks, Jeff. A fall themed potluck sounds like fun! And delicious. 🙂 ~Valentina
Wow! These look sensational, and I can only imagine how good they taste. They would be very easy to adapt to gluten-free as well. Visiting from Gluten Free A-Z Blog
Thanks so much! Hope you try them. I appreciate you visiting, too. 🙂 ~Valentina
David Scott Allen
Cutest. Cookies. Ever! Love almond-anything!
Why thank you, David! I do like cute. 😉 ~Valentina
I love the flavors in these cookies, Valentina! They're so festive and perfect for fall with their clever shape and almond 'stem'.
Thanks so much, Marissa! Enjoy. 🙂 ~Valentina
These pumpkin cookies are adorable! The perfect, unique treat for Halloween!
Thank you Liz! I take that as a big compliment from you -- all of your desserts are so pretty! 🙂 Valentina